Nicky Murdoch, or Nicky Murdock, is a large, blond werelion with a missing right eye. Nicky first appears in Flirt, when he and his Rex Jacob kidnap Anita so that she can raise Tony Bennington's wife as a zombie. Nicky and Jacob are both strongly attracted to Anita because she is an unmated lioness in a metaphysical sense. Because Nicky has never been with another lycanthrope, he loses control and challenges Jacob for the right to be Anita's mate.
Although Nicky believes that Anita has rolled him as a vampire could, he still agrees to let her feed the ardeur on him. During the feeding Anita decides not to make him her lion to call, but to roll his mind completely, making him her slave, or Bride, as vampires call it. He doesn't to mind, having wished he had a place he belonged, and Anita takes him with her after she is rescued.
Nicky is a made sociopath, which means that once upon a time he had real emotions and can thus understand them a bit better than a born sociopath would.
Nicky is a large and very muscular man. He's nearly six feet tall but appears taller due his sheer size. He keeps his blond hair short except for a triangular fall that covers almost half of his face, hiding the missing eye. He is flexible where he needs to be for sex or hand-to-hand fighting, but otherwise he's just filled with bulging muscles to the point it's a wonder he doesn't tear his shirt doing simple tasks. He has to buy bigger jeans and have them tailored for his waist, because his thighs are too wide otherwise, or wear shorts and split the legs wider. He likes lifting weights, and is genetically inclined to bulking up.
Nicky grew up on a ranch somewhere out West within United States, and can perform all kinds of related duties like lay fences and do some carpentry if he has right tools. He can even do a bit of wiring, although he says he's not very good at it and is definitely not an electrician. He knows how to handle lifestock, and helps to wrangle the cow Anita uses to rise an old zombie in Dead Ice.
Nicky's mother was a diagnosed psychopath, and the reason he only has one eye left.
Being a Bride
As a Bride Nicky can't help but love Anita unconditionally, and along the way she falls in love with him as well, which makes him happier than he's ever been. Thanks to their connection he can feel Anita's emotions, and is compelled to do his best to make her happy, even if it means that he needs to try to be as independent as possible. He cannot ignore a direct command from Anita, even simple off-handed ones like telling him to drop some subject, and has to occasionally enlist someone else to give her a list of things he is at the time unable to bring up in her presence without being relieved of the order. If Anita is injured too badly or otherwise runs out of energy she starts draining energy from Nicky. Unlike with animals to call and members of her triumvirates, Nicky's death wouldn't harm Anita physically.
Sexuality and relationships
Nicky is heterosexual, although he has had sex with men before. Because his mother made him feel kind of anti-girls for a time, Nicky tried to be gay, and says he might still be hooking up with guys if he was less of a raging heterosexual or had a different therapist. As it is, he doesn't do men.
Anita is Nicky's first real relationship, although he has seduced people for work and has had up to six month long relationships while undercover. He is happy in his relationship with Anita, and although he thinks it would be nice to have another woman in their poly group he doubts they'll find anyone who would enjoy having sex with him. Even his version of mild sex is too rough for most women, and he's not into dominating anyone outside of bedroom, which cuts out most people he's met who are into rougher sex and want more than a one night stand. Nicky isn't interested in sleeping around, because what he has with Anita is enough for him, and he doesn't want to mess it up.
Position in werelion society
When Anita first meets him, Nicky is an enforcer of Jacob's pride. After Anita makes him her Bride he stays in St. Louis but mostly ignores the local pride, and when Haven takes it over and makes everyone's lives miserable Anita tells Nicky not to kill Haven. After Anita kills Haven herself, Nicky kills two of the other werelions and takes over the pride, making himself Rex and Anita his Regina.
Being a sociopath Nicky has trouble tending to the emotional needs of his pride, and Anita doesn't have time to mother the lions, so Nicky forms a coalition with Travis, who is weak as a fighter but has high emotional intelligence. He helps Nicky to be a better Rex, and in return Nicky protects Travis from the stronger werelions. Later Dev joins the coalition as well.
- Last name spelled "Murdock" in the "Zombie Dearest" short story.